An example of an Assignment: Hedgehogs and Foxes

One of the key roles that managers in any organization play is solving the day to day challenges that might present themselves in the course of running the given organization. One of the best ways of tackling such problems is adopting a collaborative approach. This means to involve different stakeholders in decision making. Presented below is an example of an assignment that you may be required to work on.

Assignment: Hedgehogs and Foxes

Wicked problems are situations which occur due to inadequate information for managers to make informed decisions. Apart from the fact the wicked problems slow the rate of business growth; they also tend to limit integrative approaches in decision making. In order to tackle such problems, managers consult experts to help in instilling integrative thinking, developing skills in boundary spanning and improving innovation capability (Borum, 2014). In particular, managers may consult hedgehogs or foxes for advice. Organizations are able to overcome the problem of wicked problems if collaborative approaches and systemic reasoning are applied in decision making processes.


The concepts discussed in Weinberger’s article connect with the construct of wicked problems because of one major reason. Despite the knowledge that traditional experts maintained power and influence by controlling the flow of information, organizations have remained consistent in consulting experts who employ such strategies. Therefore, it appears that organizations are creating new problems instead of solving the current ones (Borum, 2014).

Based on theoretical foundations concerning expertise and knowledge, it is evident that there are both foxes and hedgehogs in my organization. I think that the top managers can be best described as hedgehogs because of their pattern in decision making. In particular, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) emphasizes on protocols and observance of bureaucratic ideals (Davenport &Prusak, 1998). Conversely, majority of the workers, especially in the IT and finance departments, can be identified with the qualities of foxes. In particular, the finance and IT managers are systematic and accommodate new bodies of evidence when making decision. In fact, they rarely observe legislations or unnecessary protocols in implementing tactical programs. The fact the IT manager appears before the disciplinary team for failure to observe legislations several times in a month is indicative of the hedgehog mentality across top officials. However, there is a different trend among lower level officials.

As a matter of fact, the finance and IT departments are widely known because of the multidisciplinary approach they employ in sharing information. In addition, various departments share and hold joint meetings, thereby causing cross-pollination of ideas. Apart from that, the Chief Knowledge Officer (CKO) performs his task in an outstanding fashion (Davenport &Prusak, 1998). He is dedicated to ensure that workers attend forums and seminars to improve their knowledge concerning organizational management. As a result, Davenport and Prusak satisfies the needs of its customers.


Davenport and Prusak has more foxes than hedgehogs. Workers in various departments share information on a regular basis. In addition, the CKO is creative and determined to ensure that workers receive new insights concerning the job. To a large extent, the organization employs systemic reasoning and collaborative approaches when making business decisions.


Borum, R. (2014). The Fox and the Hedgehog: Contrasting Approaches to Anticipating the

Environment. Infinity Journal3(4).

Davenport, T. &Prusak, L. (1998). Working knowledge: how organizations manage what they

know. Boston, Mass: Harvard Business School Press


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